Israel Adesanya Downplays Robert Whittaker Pre-UFC 271 Improvements

Robert Whittaker, Israel Adesanya
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UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya doesn’t think Robert Whittaker’s recent fights are any indication that he stands a chance against him.

Adesanya and Whittaker are set to meet once again for the middleweight belt, nearly three years after Adesanya earned the title over Whittaker at UFC 243. Adesanya had earned the interim title over Kelvin Gastelum before knocking out Whittaker just a few months later.

Whittaker has won three straight over the likes of Darren Till, Jared Cannonier, and Gastelum. Many believe he’s bounced back in a big way and could potentially be the one to dethrone Adesanya.

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But, Adesanya thinks Whittaker may be getting too much credit for his recent wins. During a recent interview on his YouTube channel, Adesanya gave his thoughts on Whittaker’s recent successes.

Israel Adesanya Feels Robert Whittaker’s Improvements Are Overblown

“Yes. Way too much [credit’,” Adesanya said. “To the point where I’m like, did he invent a new move or something? Did he reinvent the jab or I don’t know what. He improved, yes, but not to the point where people have blown it up to be. The proportion. I think maybe people just have low standards, that’s all. I just have high standards….

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“He played the game very well against all three opponents, I feel. At the same time, you put those three guys together, they don’t amount to me. The way they play the game, it’s not the same. So like I said, [GSP voice] ‘I was not impressed by your performance.’” (h/t Bloody Elbow)

Adesanya has shown big improvements in his own right over his past few fights. After struggling with former light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz’s grappling at UFC 259, he was able to stuff Marvin Vettori‘s ground attack at UFC 263.

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Many believe that Whittaker’s best chance at defeating Adesanya will be to utilize his wrestling. But, it may be easier said than done.

What is your prediction for Israel Adesanya vs. Robert Whittaker 2?